A section of Members of Parliament have launched a campaign to oppose salary cuts proposed by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) last month.
Even before the 12th parliament is convened, a member of the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) in the 11th Parliament and Homabay County Women Representative Gladys Wanga has rubbished the new salary structure, terming it as unacceptable.
Wanga said the new pay was meant to snatch Parliament of its status, adding MPs will not accept it.
"There is a mission to demean MPs and reduce them to beggars, as was the case in the 1990's when elected leaders would on Friday's go begging in government offices. We will not stand up and watch as this plan is systematically executed," said Wanga.
The Serem-led commission in July announced a new salary structure that slashed the salaries of state officers, including President, his Deputy, Cabinet Secretaries, Speakers, Principal Secretaries, Governors, MPs, Senators and Members of County Assemblies, saving over Sh8 billion from the country's bloated wage bill in the process.
MPs and Senators salaries were cut from Sh710,000 to Sh 621,000, and further abolished the Sh5,000 sitting allowances paid to members for attending each plenary session.
MPs were also deprived of allowances paid for attending House committees. Mileage allowance was also scrapped from the legislators pay, so was the car grants they enjoyed at the beginning of every parliamentary term.
Wanga protested the pay cut, saying that, while the rationalization of the packages affected other state officers, the legislators appeared more targeted.
"We will not try to arm-twist anyone, but we will have to talk to our members and engage in serious conversations so that we can at least get what was being paid in the 11th Parliament," she said.
Kiambu Women Representative Gathoni Wa Muchomba also joined the movement, saying the new remuneration for MPs was not reasonable.
Kenyans took to the twitter to express their anger on the MPs opposed to the pay cuts. Here are some of the reactions.
- @ Elijahkyama said, "Kenyans look at MPs you queued in line from 4am to vote for. The first order of business is salary. No mention of the voters."
- @ ItsMutai, "MPs should earn ALMOST nothing for them to realize their JOB is to help IMPROVE the economy and not to be our bosses while we die."
- @ itsnjosh noted, "Whether Jubilee or NASA , this mpigs are always united in greed and graft."
- @ sulemanwanjiku, "Your leaders divide you into NASA and Jubilee . When you get busy fighting, they close ranks to enrich themselves. See your lives."
- @ j_Kanyita said, "At this point in my life, Its so funny when I hear someone crying that ye hataki mshahara ya 600k, ye anataka ya 700k..jesus Christ # mpspay".